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Transgender Girl Scout Sells Thousands of Cookies After Facing Transphobic Criticism

Transgender Girl Scout Sells Thousands of Cookies After Facing Transphobic Criticism


After an unkind neighbor told Stormi that no one would buy cookies from her, she sold more than 3,000 boxes in a matter of days

barbsimages / Shutterstock.com

A transgender Girl Scout gained worldwide support and cookie sales after she was told that no one would be interested in buying from ‘a boy in a dress.’

Stormi, a 9-year-old transgender Girl Scout in Herrin, Illinois, has made one of her transphobic haters eat his words by selling more than 3,000 boxes of cookies and counting after she was told by a neighbor, “nobody wants to buy cookies from a boy in a dress.”

“It made me sad, because I’m a girl,” Stormi told BuzzFeed News. Her last name has not been released.

Shortly after the unpleasant encounter, Stormi’s foster mom, Kim, moved all of her cookie operations to Digital Cookie 2.0, the updated platform where Scouts can sell their cookies online. With investments from Visa and Dell, the platform allows girls to create personalized websites where they can connect with customers, and gain a better understanding of business strategy and digital marketing.

Kim then posted about her daughter’s struggles in an online forum for parents of transgender children, and quickly garnered support for Stormi in the form of letters and social media encouragement. As a foster child, Stormi’s goal was to sell cookies to benefit foster children, and to send them cookies, which she now plans to do every year.

Stormi’s story even reached Lauren Brickman and Caitlin Foye, two improv performers and former Girl Scouts in New York City, who offered free admission to their show on January 29 with any proof of purchase of Stormi’s cookies. Within days of Stormi’s story spreading across the Internet, she managed to sell more than 3,000 boxes of cookies, with some requests coming from as far away as Australia.

Stormi’s personal campaign to benefit foster children has since ended, but you can still place orders from her webpage through March. “I want kids like me to know they are perfect just the way they are,” Stormi said. “There are people all over the world that love you. Never give up because it does get better.”

The Girl Scouts organization declined to comment for this story.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


EndrTimes


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A Vatican official said an intergovernmental pact can help countries address the current migration crisis through dialogue and concrete solution s rather than confrontation and fear.

Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugee Section of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, said the Catholic Church is doing all that it can to help welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants in countries where the U.N. Global Compact on Migration is formally adopted.

"The compact has a new style, a new spirit based on what we have brought ," Father Czerny told journalists Nov. 28. "It is our desire to promote dialogue and not confrontation and isolation to promote a culture of encounter and not let fear decide. This is the problem. If fear is in charge, that is a problem."

Father Czerny was among several experts who spoke about the global compact, which will be formally adopted at an international conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, Dec. 10-11 .

Also present were Anne T. Gallagher, president of the International Catholic Migration Commission, and Stephane Jaquemet, policy director for the commission.

The Vatican contributed to the negotiations leading to the agreement and prepared a 20-point action plan that included concrete proposals to help governments improve the situation of migrants and refugees.

The eight-page plan contains proposals "grounded on the church's best practices responding to the needs of migrants and refugees at the grassroots level" and provides "practical considerations which Catholic and other advocates can use, add to and develop in their dialogue with governments toward the global compact."

Through the pastoral action plan, Father Czerny said, the church shared "the fruit of what we live, of what we do, of what we want and what we dream."

"This is already a step that isn't left within the confines of the church, but we wanted to bring this treasure and this hope within the process of consultation and negotiation," he said.

Father Czerny said the Vatican was pleased to see that the compact not only "reflects on important points in our document , but also the approach, the style and methodology" based on the church's principles and values.

"If you want this value, here are things that work," he said. "If you want to achieve this goal, here are ways which find that will actually get you to the goal."

The compact's multilateral approach, he added, is an example that countries working together to achieve a common goal "is an indispensable key to solve the problems in the world."

"We are happy for this success in a fragmented world," Father Czerny said.

Remembering President George H.W. Bush, dead at 94

A Call for Climate Justice

Seek Justice. We must acknowledge that climate change is a huge and still growing factor in many issues of social injustice: Poverty, food and water security, nutrition, child health, women’s empowerment etc. Followers of Christ are called to do his justice in the world. That means facing climate change. (Zechariah 7:9-10, Romans 12:15-18, Jeremiah 22:3, Isaiah 1:17).

Important to know your religious freedom rights

I was saddened to hear about the Oct. 27 shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue. Everyone should be able to attend worship services without worrying that someone would target them solely because of their religion.

I was pleased to learn that a local interfaith group held a service on Nov. 1 for those killed in the shooting. Our community has come together this way before. For example, groups gathered in:

  • August 2012 in response to a shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin
  • April 2014 to express their concern for the atrocities happening in the Syrian civil war
  • September 2014 after three local Christian churches were vandalized

The most protection comes in the private sphere. We are all entitled to choose how and what to believe, to teach those beliefs within our families and to worship how we desire. Additionally, everyone has the right to express their views — religious or not — in public, and no one can be discriminated against due to their religion. Churches also have the right to establish their own doctrine, leadership and membership criteria.

On Religious Freedom, Madison Was Right


Detail of portrait of James Madison by John Vanderlyn, 1816 (Wikimedia)


We’re both fans of Ramesh Ponnuru. But we think he’s wrong in a recent post here on the Corner. There he argues that we are advocating an un-originalist position for the Free Exercise Clause: requiring the government accommodate religious dissenters from laws, except under certain conditions. He contends that our position is the one ushered in by the Supreme Court in 1963 in Sherbert v. Verner, which was replaced by Justice Scalia’s views for the court in 1990’s Smith. And Ramesh muses that Scalia was probably right.

But Ramesh misunderstands our position. And relies on un-originalist evidence for his. First, the reading of the Free Exercise Clause we primarily advocated was not the 1963-1990 one the Supreme Court adopted. That was our fallback position if the Court was unwilling to go with the clause’s original meaning. And we explicitly stated such.

Rather, we advocated for the original meaning. The scholarship of Michael McConnell has shown, persuasively in our view, that the original understanding of the Free Exercise Clause often required religious accommodations (though we recognize Philip Hamburger takes a different view of the history).

It is beyond this short post to lay out all of this evidence, so we highlight just a few pieces of evidence of the original meaning. When debating the Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, one Congressman argued that the exercise was foolish because of course these rights were protected and Congress might as well be adding an amendment that one has a right to not remove their hat. In response, another Congressman reminded all that William Penn had been prosecuted in England for his refusal, based on religious belief, to remove his hat in court. And that reminder quieted the opposition.

Yet under Justice Scalia’s views in Smith, Penn could have been prosecuted. The law requiring the removal of hats was neutral and generally applicable. Penn’s religious freedom should have fallen if Scalia was correct, yet the Congress that passed the First Amendment didn’t think so.

But there is more. All but two state constitutions at the Founding viewed the right in the way we argue, and these provisions are arguably the basis for the free exercise clause. The practice of religious exemptions was common in the colonies and early states. And the author of the free exercise clause, Madison, viewed it as providing religious exemptions. There is additional evidence, but we are not writing a law review article here.

Strangely, the 1963-1990 Supreme Court, hardly originalist in its methodology, actually got closer to the clause’s original meaning than did Justice Scalia. Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish. It's time we all renew our commitment to religious freedom.

In Chicago on June 30, 2014.
SCOTT OLSON

OLIVER THOMAS AND CHARLES C. HAYNES | OPINION CONTRIBUTORS | 8:00 am EST November 29, 2018

In the turbulent 1960s, John Courtney Murray famously reminded Americans that the Constitution begins with "we the, people," not "we, the tribe."

Murray, a Jesuit priest, wasn’t papering over differences that are often deep and abiding. Each of us has our tribe — Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or one of a hundred others in the pluralistic society we all call home. Differences matter.

Instead, Murray was calling on Americans to recognize what we share across our religious and philosophical divides, especially the core principles of religious liberty in the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

In just 16 words, our framers created an arrangement in religious freedom that has made today’s pluralism possible. More than any other provision of the Constitution, the religious liberty clauses are the “unum” in "e pluribus unum" — out of many, one.

It's time to renew our support of First Amendment

In this divided, dangerous moment in our history, it is time to renew our support for the framework of liberty provided by the First Amendment. That’s why on Thursday, American leaders from many different faiths and beliefs will sign the American Charter of Freedom of Religion and Conscience, a reaffirmation of religious liberty in our time.


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